Herbs and spices are foods with really strong flavours. Every local area will have some familiar herbs or spices. These may include garlic, ginger, black pepper, chillies, coriander, cumin, turmeric and cinnamon.

Those of us who cannot always afford to buy relishes to eat with our staple food, will find that a small amount of money spent buying spices and herbs will really improve our meals. Some spices and herbs can be gathered wild in the forest and dried. Fresh herbs, such as mint and coriander, add flavour and also add vitamins to our meals.

We can learn about the ways other cultures use spices and herbs. We can be open to learning about new ideas and flavours from them. We can also learn by talking to people in markets, making friends with people of other cultures or observing different ideas while travelling to visit family or friends.

Discussion

  • What are the common herbs that we use in cooking in this area? Are they available through the year?
  • Are there any herbs that were used traditionally that are now less common? Is it possible to grow these in our gardens?
  • What spices do we use in our cooking? How expensive is it to buy these? Can we mix our own spices at home?
  • Are there people of other cultures living in our region or country? How could we learn about their cooking methods and their use of herbs and spices?
  • Are we interested in trying new flavours, or do we prefer our food as it is?